Virtue and friendship

One true friend adds more to our happiness than a thousand enemies add to our unhappiness.

Virtue and friendship

The Nature of Friendship Friendship essentially involves a distinctive kind of concern for your friend, a concern which might reasonably be understood as a kind of love.

Virtue and friendship

Philosophers from the ancient Greeks on have traditionally distinguished three notions Virtue and friendship can properly be called love: Agape is a kind of love that does not respond to the antecedent value of its object but instead is thought to create value in the beloved; it has come through the Christian tradition to mean the sort of love God has for us persons as well as, by extension, our love for God and our love for humankind in general.

Given this classification of kinds of love, philia seems to be that which is most clearly relevant to friendship though just what philia amounts to needs to be clarified in more detail.

For this reason, love and friendship often get lumped together as a single topic; nonetheless, there are significant differences between them.

As understood here, love is an evaluative attitude directed at particular persons as such, an attitude which we might take towards someone whether or not that love is reciprocated and whether or not we have an established relationship with her.

Consequently, accounts of friendship tend to understand it not merely as a case of reciprocal love of some form together with mutual acknowledgment of this lovebut as essentially involving significant interactions between the friends—as being in this sense a certain kind of relationship.

Friendship as a virtue? - Challenge

Nonetheless, questions can be raised about precisely how to distinguish romantic relationships, grounded in eros, from relationships of friendship, grounded in philia, insofar as each involves significant interactions between the involved parties that stem from a kind of reciprocal love that is responsive to merit.

Clearly the two differ insofar as romantic love normally has a kind of sexual involvement that friendship lacks; yet, as Thomas asks, is that enough to explain the real differences between them?

Badhwar65—66 seems to think so, claiming that the sexual involvement enters into romantic love in part through a passion and yearning for physical union, whereas friendship involves instead a desire for a more psychological identification.

Virtue and friendship

Yet it is not clear exactly how to understand this: For further discussion, see Section 1. In philosophical discussions of friendship, it is common to follow Aristotle Nicomachean Ethics, Book VIII in distinguishing three kinds of friendship: Although it is a bit unclear how to understand these distinctions, the basic idea seems to be that pleasure, utility, and virtue are the reasons we have in these various kinds of relationships for loving our friend.

That is, I may love my friend because of the pleasure I get out of her, or because of the ways in which she is useful to me, or because I find her to have a virtuous character.

Given the involvement of love in each case, all three kinds of friendship seem to involve a concern for your friend for his sake and not for your own.

There is an apparent tension here between the idea that friendship essentially involves being concerned for your friend for his sake and the idea of pleasure and utility friendships: If you benefit your friend because, ultimately, of the benefits you receive, it would seem that you do not properly love your friend for his sake, and so your relationship is not fully one of friendship after all.

For this reason, most contemporary accounts, by focusing their attention on the non-deficient forms of friendship, ignore pleasure and utility friendships.

Virtue - Wikipedia

In philosophical accounts of friendship, several themes recur consistently, although various accounts differ in precisely how they spell these out. Although many accounts of friendship do not analyze such mutual caring any further, among those that do there is considerable variability as to how we should understand the kind of caring involved in friendship.

That is, friends must be moved by what happens to their friends to feel the appropriate emotions: However, see Velleman for a dissenting view. A central difference among the various accounts of mutual caring is the way in which these accounts understand the kind of evaluation implicit therein.

Most accounts understand that evaluation to be a matter of appraisal: Other accounts, however, understand caring as in part a matter of bestowing value on your beloved: Rather, through the friendship, and through changes in your friend over time, you may come to change your evaluative outlook, thereby in effect subordinating your commitment to certain values to your commitment to your friend.

Of course, within friendship the influence need not go only one direction: Indeed, that friends have a reciprocal effect on each other is a part of the concern for equality many find essential to friendship, and it is central to the discussion of intimacy in Section 1. For more on the notion of caring about another for her sake and the variety of philosophical accounts of it, see the entry on love.Gentleness is the value and quality of one's gentle has a long history in many, but not all schwenkreis.comness is considered to play a very important role in life.


The quality of gentleness is colloquially understood to be that of kindness, consideration and amiability. The Gentleman's Guide to Vice and Virtue has 43, ratings and 9, reviews. Em (RunawayWithDreamthieves) said: “I don’t think it’s a good idea to go.

Online Library of Liberty. A collection of scholarly works about individual liberty and free markets. A project of Liberty Fund, Inc. And friendship is superior to every valuable thing in life. We will write a custom essay sample on Virtue and Friendship specifically for you for only $ $/page.

Quotes about Virtue and Friendship and Virtue Quotes from my large collection of Friendship Quotes. Dec 02,  · Quotations about friends and friendship, compiled by The Quote Garden.

Aristotle: Ethics